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December 30, 2015

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The Fourth District holds a parent who would have lost custody of her child despite alleged errors and omissions by her counsel could not show causation in a legal malpractice claim Johnneisha Kemper was represented by appointed county attorneys when she lost custody of her child. Another attorney from the same office believed prior attorneys […]

August 10, 2015

Hartford Casualty Ins. Co. v. J.R. Marketing, LLC, 2015 WL 4716917 (August 10, 2015)

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The California Supreme Court allows an insurer to sue Cumis counsel to recover allegedly unreasonable and unnecessary defense fees and costs.  J.R. Marketing, Noble Locks, and several of their employees, (J.R. Marketing”) were sued for intentional misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, unfair competition, and other counts in California and in other states. Hartford Casualty Insurance […]

August 6, 2015

Coldren v. Hart, King & Coldren, Inc. (2015)239 Cal.App.4th 237

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The Fourth District holds a shareholder in a non-derivative suit against a corporation does not have standing to disqualify an attorney representing another shareholder and the corporation, and there was no actual conflict of interest between the shareholder and the corporation being represented by the same attorney. Hart, King & Coldren, Inc. (HKC) had two […]

July 21, 2015

Law Offices of Marc Grossman v. Victor Elementary School District (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 1010

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The Fourth District holds attorney’s fees for self-representation are recoverable under the Public Records Act. The Law Offices of Marc Grossman sought, as a member of the public, the amount the school district spent to defend a claim. The Court of Appeal granted Grossman’s writ of mandate, reversing the trial court, and ordered the trial […]

June 30, 2015

Klotz v. Milbank Tweed (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 133

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The Second District holds the pre-filing gatekeeping statute against civil conspiracy claims alleging an attorney conspired with a client applied to bar non-client claims against an attorney. Adam Klotz, Richard Spitz, and Stephen Bruce formed SageMill LLC (SageMill) to craft tailored, short-term investment strategies and provide investment advice. SageMill’s operating agreement provided a member could […]

June 29, 2015

Finton Construction, Inc. v. Bidna & Keys, APLC (2015) _ Cal.App.4th _ , 2015 WL 3947116

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The Fourth District applies the litigation privilege to dismiss a claim a law firm received stolen goods from its clients. Bidna & Keys, APLC (“B & K”) represented Michael Reeves in a dispute between Reeves and his business partners, John Finton and Daniel Tontini. Reeves, Finton and Tontini owned Finton Construction, Inc. (“FCI”), a custom […]

June 25, 2015

Shaoxing City Maolong Wuzhong Down Products, LTD. et al., v. Keehn & Associates, APC et al. 2015 WL4452801

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The Second District rules the legal malpractice one-year limitations period was triggered when an attorney missed a deadline, not when the underlying case settled.  Shaoxing City Maolong Wuzhong Down Products, LTD, (“Shaoxing”), a creditor in a bankruptcy proceeding, retained Keehn & Associates (“Keehn”) to challenge another creditor’s lien. Keehn failed to timely challenge the lien. […]

June 24, 2015

Castaneda v. Sup. Ct. (Perrin Bernard Supowitz) 2015 WL 3892154

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The Second District concludes a firm is disqualified if one of its members previously received confidential information as a volunteer settlement officer, even if the firm establishes screening procedures. Jesus Castaneda sued his employer for wrongful termination and related claims. He participated in a mandatory settlement conference where Elsa Bañuelos, senior counsel at the law […]

June 12, 2015

Martinez v State of California Department of Transportation (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 559

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The Fourth District orders a new trial based on attorney misconduct.   Donn Martinez filed a personal injury suit against the State of California, represented by Karen Bilotti Prior to trial, the court granted a motion in limine limiting references to Martinez’s affiliation with ministry catering to potential motorcycle gang members, and his  termination of employment […]

May 1, 2015

Bergstein v Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP (2015) 236 Cal.App.4th 793

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The Second District holds a non-client’s complaint that a law firm aided and abetted his former attorney’s breach of fiduciary duty involves constitutionally protected petitioning activity subject to the anti-SLAPP statute. Despite causes of action labeled as various torts, all the conduct alleged involved communicative conduct protected by the litigation privilege. The statute of limitations […]